Pad/Tablet case review: Gumdrop VS Otterbox

pic1When you really use an iPad or tablet in the classroom, or in the playground – or, frankly, anywhere near kids – you really need to protect it with a case or cover. Schools, support units and families ask us: which is the best protective case for my device?

Here is Powered Life’s review of two of the most popular protective cases for iPad, tablet and mobile phones: Otterbox Defender and Gumdrop Hideaway.

Let’s start with the construction. Both of the cases are rugged, durable and have dual material construction to protect against drops, bumps and scratches. These are seriously rugged cases, used by special needs kids, schools, businesses and travellers alike. Both include integrated plastic screen protection, a stand for hands-free viewing, drop proof corners, and good grip. They are engineered to protect your device, not just be a pretty bit of plastic over your shiny, slippery class and metal device: inbuilt air chambers to absorb shock, ABS internal frames. Tough silicone outer skins. Real protection for people who really need to protect their device.

There are differences though.

The Otterbox is sleek and smooth all over, which means it can easily slide into a bag or folio, and comes in a choice of 3 conservative colours. The Gumdrop series case is hard core to look at with its checker plate designed silicone cover and masculine colour options (though more options are available for bulk purchases). Gumdrop is also the lighter of the two.

Then there is the orientation of the display. The stand on the Otterbox can handle multiple tilts and profiles. You can use it portrait or landscape, with various degrees to each. Unfortunately the Gumdrop stand really only works in landscape, which is how a table is generally used for typing.

And the nature of the stand is also different on both cases. The Otterbox has a fully removable stand which is also its clip-on screen cover, while the Gumdrop stand has a magnetic close, so the stand tucks away snug into the case when not in use – and fits into iPad sync-charge stations as a complete unit. So it really depends on how many parts you are willing to carry around.

Both brands ensure that all the ports are protected to keep out dust and debris, which is great if you need to survey farmland or inspect warehouses – or keep school-bag grit out of power ports. But still easy to open and recharge including when using a portable rechargeable power pack or solar charger.

So which is more popular? These are both top of the range cases and attract the discerning buyer who wants – or needs – their device to keep going for a long time in tricky conditions. Otterbox is often preferred by occupational therapists for special needs children, and also by business users. Gumdrop’s slightly cheaper model Drop Tech (no stand) is generally the case of choice for schools – who would prefer the Hideaway but have to contain costs. Business and healthcare clients have used both to great success – you will see these cases used by our clients in hospitals, air-borne health services, building and construction industry, schools around Australia and more.

Bottom line: Otterbox and Gumdrop are both great cases, built with excellent quality, and will provide protection for your device in almost any situation (except underwater! You need to look at waterproof brand Lifeproof for that). The product differences of look, features such as the stands will be the only thing that splits them. Need more info? Ask an expert!


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